Skeels community holds service to support recovery

About 20 people from the Ravenna’s Skeels community gathered Friday at the United Church of Jesus Christ for a service called Midnight Cry to support those recovering from addiction disorders. 

Among other speakers, Ravenna native Gregory Kirklin read poetry and spoke about his experience helping family and friends overcome addiction.

Churchgoers pose for a portrait before Midnight Cry at the United Church of Jesus Christ in Ravenna on Friday.
Gregory Kirklin speaks to churchgoers.

Rafael Suarez Remon also shared the story of his journey from Cuba to the United States and how his faith helped him along the way. 

Rafael Suarez Remon prays with congregants as he details the story of his journey from Cuba to the United States and the faith he gained along the way during the Midnight Cry event.

“God has always been with me,” he said. “I didn’t always know it, but he was.”

He met Ravenna native and prison minister Desiree Perry, whom he called his angel, at Trumbull County Jail. Because of her and others in the program, he has now begun his own international ministry program, he said.

The Apostolic Praise Team, (from left to right) Linda Purnell, Jazzmyn Mitchell and Mary Jo Allison, lead churchgoers in an opening song.
Tina Sanders preaches and Vicky Chase raises her arms in response.
(From left to right) Wanda Warren, Vicky Chase and Desiree Perry
James Sanders leads churchgoers in a closing prayer.

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Michael Indriolo is a visual journalist based in Kent. He is a contributor at The Portager covering a range of topics, including local government and community.